Shrimp and Grits
A classic combination that I had for the first time in Louisiana. When I first tried it the shrimps were so tender and succulent and the broth made the dish. It was so good as a first course, I wanted to pass over the main course and just order another bowl. Sometimes you just can’t beat simplicity (though truth be told the dish was deceptive–there was nothing simple about the broth). As I was invited back to the kitchen later and got to see the saucier station–it was no joke. It sure did smell divine though!
(above is some true Louisiana shrimp and grits)
For my version of shrimp and grits, I kept it a little more on the succulent side and got saucy by adding in some smoked gouda to kick up the flavor on the grits and by grilling the shrimp for a contrast of texture. Pretty darn tasty.
Shrimp and Grits
2 corn cobs
1/2 pound medium sized shrimp, cleaned, shelled, and deveined
1 lemon, juiced
2 teaspoons seasoning mix (I love Kirkland’s signature seasoning salt with fresh dill. Also Tony’s Original Creole Seasoning is pretty awesome as well)–other substitutes 1 teaspoon dried/fresh minced dill or 1 teaspoon onion powder mixed with 1 teaspoon smoked paprika.
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup quick cooking corn grits
2 1/2 cup shrimp stock
1 cup whole milk
1 cup grated smoked gouda cheese
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
minced cilantro/cilantro sprig for garnish
Rinse corn cobs in water and leave damp. Add them to a preheated grill and grill about 3-4 minutes per side, turning as they pick up color. Corn should be finished in about 12-16 minutes. Remove from grill and set on a cutting board to cool.
Meanwhile, add shrimp to the grill. Grill until just pink–they go fast so keep an eye on them. (I use an electronic grill since I live in NYC but if you are using a standard grill–you can either grill them on top of nonstick aluminum foil or skewer them in water soaked skewers). In about 2-4 minutes shrimp will have fully cooked. After the shrimp are pink, quickly remove them to a medium bowl and season with lemon juice and seasoning. Sprinkle with salt and pepper then set aside.
By now your corn will have cooled enough to cut it from the cob. Take the corn kernels and season them with salt and pepper then set to the side.
In a medium stockpot, combine shrimp stock and milk and bring to a boil. Slowly stir in the grits and whisk until thickened. Once grits have soaked up most of the broth and have a creamy consistency, add in gouda. Mix until thoroughly combined then finish with butter and season with salt and pepper.
To plate, spoon a generous helping of smoked gouda grits into a bowl and top with a large spoonful of grilled corn kernels, arrange shrimp on top of corn, and sprinkle with hot smoked paprika. Top with cilantro. Serve warm and enjoy!
This dish goes great with hot sauce!